Trying to find taxi solutions

2019-04-16 06:00

Imizamo Yethu community leader Kenny Tokwe hopes that the intervention from the Minister of Transport, Blade Nzimande, will bring an end to the taxi violence in the area.

The recent taxi violence saw four people being shot and killed. As it stands, the Hout Bay to Cape Town taxis are not operating until everyone is on the same page. Only the Hout Bay to Wynberg taxis are operating.

Tokwe believes the interventions that brought the department of transport and the taxi associations in one roof will bare fruits.

“This had been going on for a very long time, it has to come to an end. A lot of people have lost their lives and this can’t go on,” he says.

He added the taxi associations are now forced to find common ground as the other route is not operating. “I hope that those that are losing the money from not operating will help come with an amicable solution. Even the commuters are struggling, so this has to be resolved. We just can’t close the taxi operations, they have to find a way to work together and us, as leaders, we want peace and everyone to be safe,” he says.

Hout Bay Police spokesperson Warrant Officer Tanya Lesch says no arrests have been made for the shooting.

Following a spate of fatal shootings a few weeks ago, believed to be taxi industry related, transport and law enforcement authorities convened an urgent meeting of the Transport Priority Committee where a commitment was made to intensify enforcement activities in the affected area while the situation remains tense.

The committee comprises Department of Transport and Public Works officials as well as Provincial Traffic, City of Cape Town law enforcement agencies, the National Prosecuting Authourity (NPA), and the South African Police Service (SAPS).

In a statement, Siphesihle Dube, spokesperson for the provincial minister of Transport and Public Works, said the violence is believed to be related to ongoing disputes between two associations affiliated with the two Cape mother-bodies; Cape Amalgamated Taxi Association (CATA) and Congress for Democratic Taxi Associations (CODETA)

“Illegal operations in this area date back a few years, resulting in sporadic clashes between the two associations,” says Dube

The Department of Transport and Public Works says it will continue to work closely with law enforcement authorities in coordinating operations and assist police in their investigations of the violent crime that has occurred in the Hout Bay area recently.

“It is unacceptable that criminals threaten the safety of residents in the area. Police, Traffic and Metro Police prepared an integrated operational plan to stabilise the area in the short term and to maintain a heightened presence in the area over the medium to long term to root out illegal operators,” says Dube.

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